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Homeschoolers in our Midst – Grant Christensen

While the majority of students here at University of Jamestown come from the public education system, there are a growing number of those entering college from homeschool situations.

Now I know what you’re thinking… Homeschoolers are a bunch of unsocial dorks right? Well, that may or may not be the case.

Having been homeschooled for 6 years myself, I know there are “stereotypical” homeschoolers out there. However, the majority of us are pretty close to normal as far as social ability goes. Many are even involved in public school sports such as football, cross country, and extracurricular activities such as speech and debate.

A homeschool student may not adapt to the college environment as quickly as those who have been in a public school setting their entire lives.

Whether you have been homeschooled or not, college is hard, and it’s harder if you’re alone. Making friends is an essential, and it is common for homeschoolers to have a harder time seeking out friendships. Here are some suggestions to get you started:

Introduce yourself to your classmates. Choose someone new to sit by every so often and get to know them a bit, particularly in classes closely relating to your major. You will likely find many likeminded people that you can relate to and hang out with.

Get involved in sports or extracurricular activities. If there’s a sport or club that has to do with something you’re interested in, join in. Chances are you’ll find plenty of people with similar interests.

Go to the special events and speakers the college offers. If nothing else they provide a social opportunity and usually some interesting information.

Get out of “The Box”. Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone. And if you mess up, don’t worry about it. People usually won’t give you too hard of a time, and soon it’s long forgotten.

Enter the college format of learning. College is way different than high school, and while having your mom as a teacher can oftentimes result in a very good education, your mom isn’t here anymore. Either way, relearning how to learn can be a tricky process. Remember, you have professors who care, some are more hands on, and some mostly lecture, but they are all here to help.

So if you are a homeschooler or not, and you are still struggling to adapt, don’t worry, college is hard for everyone. But there are a lot of people here to lend a hand, so ask your professors, join a study group, get a tutor, just do whatever it takes to keep those grades up.

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Posted:October 12, 2015

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